Not many foods have onomatopoeic names, but popcorn — pop! pop! pop! — is one of them.
America’s favorite snack is one of nature’s minor miracles. Think about it: Through the transformative power of heat, seemingly indestructible corn kernels blossom into a delicate, can’t-stop-eating goody.
Doug and Lin Hilgendorf and their family have been growing and processing organic popcorn on their Welcome, Minn., farm — about 140 miles southwest of the Twin Cities — since the late 1990s.
The couple’s top-quality product, available in yellow and white varieties, isn’t sold in sleek packaging. Nope, it arrives on store shelves in modest white paper sacks bearing a simple Whole Grain Milling Co. label.
Doug is the family’s popcorn fan — he relies on his Stir Crazy popper and either olive oil or organic sunflower oil — and that’s one reason why they started cultivating what is now about 20 acres of corn alongside the farm’s oats, soybeans, spelt, buckwheat and rye.
“But mainly, it’s because we’re organic farmers, and we’re always looking for more things that we can sell to our customers,” he says. “I’d like to thank all the people that buy our product and support us, the people that want to know where their food is coming from. They’re the ones that keep us busy and keep us going.”
Whole Grain Milling Co. popcorn is available at most Twin Cities natural foods co-ops and at the Golden Fig, 794 Grand Av., St. Paul.